Game of Thrones has made a point this season to—among the dragon battles and sex scenes—include some long, boring scenes between Cersei and Tycho Nestoris of the Iron Bank. I know, I know, it’s not much fun to watch Cersei discuss her credit score while an army of undead is marching South, but the Iron Bank has a huge role to play in all this. Many fans believe that money could be Cersei’s ultimate downfall once the Iron Bank sees a better business opportunity in Daenerys than Cersei.
But the bank could also be another potential ally in the north, with a vested interest in Jon Snow’s cause as well. As one Reddit user explains:
I believe Jon should also be prioritizing proving to the Iron Bank that the Wights exists. I’ve thought for a while about how the White Walkers only seem to plague Westeros, while the rest of the ASOIAF World is so enormous and would remain seemingly unscathed by Westeros’ complete and utter fall in the coming Winter. Shouldn’t there be some army or ally in the Eastern Lands that would have a vested interest in ensuring the entire continent of Westeros wasn’t turned into an army of the dead? Seems to make sense that the Iron Bank would be exactly those people. They have a major interest in ensuring the Westeros economy stays intact and continues to funnel gold into their banks across The Narrow Sea. Upon learning of the coming threat to a major interest of theirs, wouldn’t the Iron Bank be motivated to provide sell-sword armies and resources to help man The Wall and defeat the White Walkers?
This is assuming Jon Snow is able to pull off his dumbest plan yet and secretly kidnap a single wight from the White Walker army. But, should the Iron Bank be convinced of the White Walker threat, their best investment would be in the salvation of the human race. That’s a pretty sound business model. The White Walkers probably aren’t going to pay taxes! Plus, since Cersei has mistakenly already paid back the Lannister debts in full, the Iron Bank has no more use for her—especially if she’s going to burn down all of King’s Landing to keep her crown.
The only problem? Another would-be king has tried to sway the Iron Bank to his side before, as the Redditor points out:
Davos and Stannis weren’t successful with the Iron Bank the last time around, but this situation seems different enough and with an enormous plus side, that it should have prompted Davos to have at least thought of and suggested the idea of recruiting them to the North’s cause!
That’s true. Davos and Stannis couldn’t get the bank on their side. But Jon Snow has a far more lucrative business opportunity for the bankers. Humans will make more money alive than dead! And money right now would be a huge help for Jon. He needs to manufacture a bunch of dragonglass weapons, and the only way to do that is with some expensive industry. He also needs to ensure the support of the Northern and Southern lords, and that’s a whole lot easier with the bank on his side. Maybe this will come into play as part of the super Game of Thrones theory. Sure, a bank swooping in to save the day isn’t necessarily an exciting twist, but George R.R. Martin has gone through incredible lengths to create a functioning fantasy world, which includes its own important economy. Our guess? We haven’t seen the last of the Iron Bank.
There are no standard “ratings” for Netflix. But “Marvel’s The Defenders,” the streamer’s newest original series in the street-hero franchise, could be one of its biggest hits ever, independent research indicates.
The four preceding Marvel series leading up to “Defenders” — “Daredevil” season 2, “Jessica Jones,” “Luke Cage” and “Iron Fist” — were among the top five most-viewed recently released Netflix originals in the first 30 days after their premieres, according to data from marketing-analytics firm Jumpshot, provided exclusively to Variety. Teen-suicide drama “13 Reasons Why” took the No. spot.
It seems safe to predict that “The Defenders,” as the culminating mashup with each of the four characters uniting against a common enemy, will turn in similar binge-heavy viewership as well. Netflix released all eight episodes of the limited series at 12:01 a.m. PT Friday. The show stars Charlie Cox (Daredevil), Krysten Ritter (Jessica Jones), Mike Colter (Luke Cage) and Finn Jones (Iron Fist).
The analysis from Jumpshot shows the relative number of U.S. Netflix viewers who watched at least one episode of each series. The data is presented as a index, benchmarked against the most-viewed Netflix original in the comparison, “Daredevil” season 2. For example, “13 Reasons Why,” the second most-viewed premier in the first 30 days, garnering 48% of the viewers that “Daredevil 2” received.
Of the series studied, “13 Reasons Why” was the only Netflix original that showed any growth in week-over-week viewership in the first month of release, with an 18% increase from week one to week two. That reflects strong word-of-mouth buzz for the controversial show.
“Stranger Things” was the seventh most-viewed Netflix original premiere in its first 30 days, but it had the lowest week-over-week decline in viewership, per the Jumpshot data. It’s not a surprise that shows see a viewing drop-off after the first week, given Netflix’s binge-friendly release strategy.
Okay so, we begin north of the Wall with Jon Snow’s zombie-snatching party, where Tormund jokes that he’s going to fuck Gendry and then warns Jon not to be so proud that he ends up dooming the North. It’s a pleasant enough scene, where the disparate party all settle scores and do some catching up as they march to purposefully hang out with the scariest motherfucker on the continent. For some reason, Jon also tries to give Jorah back his family’s Valyrian steel sword before Jorah wisely tells him he doesn’t deserve it.
Back in Winterfell, Arya and Sansa have their inevitable confrontation over Sansa’s old letter to Robb Stark assuring him that the Lannisters were good, and it plays out about how one would expect, with Arya getting in Sansa’s face and calling her a fake Stark for betraying her family. Sansa makes the obvious and true point that she was under duress and that she had to do it to stay alive, which, Arya being Arya, doesn’t sit well with her sister, who insists she’d have died instead of writing the letter. Both sisters have valid points and even after Sansa points out that infighting is exactly what Stark enemies want, Arya is stubborn enough to hold onto her antipathy.
Tyrion and Daenerys hold a debrief after Tyrion’s (still rather baffling) summit with his brother in the Red Keep, during which Tyrion tells Dany that Jon is horny for her. Tyrion and Dany are an odd pair, since she is the all-consuming conqueror with three dragons/children while Tyrion is the intellectual realist who knows the importance of the gritty process of diplomacy. The question of conquering vs. ruling that’s defined Dany’s arc for seasons now hasn’t melted away, and if anything, now that her dragons are explicit bearers of an apocalyptic power, it’s become even more prominent. She can win the war at anytime if she wants, but that won’t be enough. She has to, in her own words, break the wheel and ensure a better future. It will not be easy, especially when pitted against a sadist like Cersei.
When we return north of the Wall, everything is much more ominous, and the party spots a big hulking bear. All of a sudden they realize it’s a zombie bear and HOLY FUCKING SHIT. We’re now basically in a horror movie as this big fucker is biting people in the ass and generally destroying the tiny party of bandits and wildlings. Zombie Bear is more terrifying than Dany’s dragon, and even after Beric sets him on fire, he bites the shit out of Thoros of Myr, who later succumbs to his wounds.
There’s a short Winterfell interlude where Littlefinger reveals his plan, which is to put Brienne in between Arya and Sansa, ideally killing Arya in the process. This matters, but also, the zombie army is a much more pressing matter.
And there they are, a small detachment of ice zombies led by one of the Night King’s blue-eyed lieutenants. They fall into the party’s trap, and as soon as Jon slices open the white walker, all the wights but one immediately crumble into dust. Who knows why this happens, but it is convenient for our band of heroes, who are out to capture one wight. Tormund punches the remaining wight the face and the party captures it, but not before it lets out an ominous shriek, which inevitably means the rest of the army of the dead are coming.
Fleeing, Jon and friends run onto the surface of a frozen lake, and though they immediately try to stop and turn around to keep from breaking through, the ice zombies are now in attack mode, forcing them to make for an island in the center of the lake. Thankfully, the ice cracks, and hordes of undead are swallowed up by the lake. Still, a bunch of zombies remain on the shore, trapping our heroes on the rock.
Gendry, who Jon dispatched immediately to run back to Eastwatch, somehow avoided the ice lake and reaches the Wall after an insane snow marathon. He tells the men there they need to get word to Dany because Jon and his crew will all be dead “unless the Lord of Light sends us a bit of fire.”
And oh, would you look at that, there’s Dany in an extra-cool looking winter version of her battle dress telling Tyrion to shut up so she can fly north. Somehow, Jon and his buddies have survived (Thoros of Myr excepted) on a barren rock in a frozen lake surrounded by an army of thousands of ice zombies long enough for a raven to get from Eastwatch to Dragonstone and for Dany to ride north with all three dragons. Worrying about space and time is pretty much a lost pursuit at this point in the season.
The Hound, bored out of his gourd, starts throwing rocks at the army, which leads one particularly skeletal looking one to learn that it can just walk across the frozen lake, which has now re-frozen during the time that the heroes have been chilling on that rock. Now it’s time to fight again, and they somehow resist the onslaught and seem to be pretty efficient at killing ice zombies, although the scary thing about zombies isn’t that each one is particularly threatening, it’s that there are just so many of them. I don’t know how it’s plausible that this group of maybe a dozen frozen dudes kills as many zombies as they do, but Game of Thrones is more or less a pure action show this season, so I suppose it works.
All of a sudden, IT’S DRAGON TIME! Ice and fire are finally battling and it goddamn rules, even if it is the sort of deus ex machina device that the show staunchly refused until Season 7. Dany melts a ton of zombies and things appear to be working out until the Night King grabs a javelin and hurls that fucker into one of the minor dragons, sending it crashing into the ice. Big Crossbow may not have been enough to stop a dragon, but the Night King just Randy Johnsons that fucker right out of the sky. It’s hard to watch as its eyes close and it slips into the lake, dead as bricks.
Jon thinks about maybe dueling the Night King, but his buddy grabs him another javelin and Jon books it, only to be tackled into the lake by a trio of zombies. Dany and everyone else board Drogon and beat it, presumably leaving the King in the North drowning and soon to be recruited to the army of the dead.
Somehow, Jon pulls himself out of the lake, which is only just a slightly better position to be in since he’s wet, alone, and still surrounded by an undead army. But he’s saved by his uncle, Benjen Stark, who you’ll remember is the Nice Zombie who saved Bran in Season 6. He makes it back to Eastwatch, and somehow no major characters died in that ludicrous battle.
Despite the dragon vs. zombies extravaganza, there are still nine minutes left in the episode, which begin with Sansa sneaking into Arya’s room to find her unsheathed Valyrian steel dagger lying ominously on her table and a bag full of faces of Arya’s dead enemies. Arya, now a swaggering uber-assassin, is scary as shit as she threatens to skin Sansa and forces her to play the game of faces before leaving her with a wink and the dagger.
Daenerys tells Jon that she’s now fully radicalized against the army of the dead after they claimed one of her babies. Jon, whose scars are now exposed, tells Dany that he wants to bend the knee and the viewer is made to believe that they’re about to bone.
They do not bone.
Instead, the episode ends with the Night King’s army corps of engineers dragging the dead dragon (pretty sure it’s Viserion) out of the lake. The Night King gently touches his head and an icy blue eye opens, and that means we got a dang frost dragon on our hands, folks.
Dany now has two dragons and also has to fight against a resurrected ice dragon someday when they inevitably fight the army of the dead. I don’t think Cersei is going to listen when they show her the wight, but at least Dany knows the stakes.
For the second time in two weeks, the network has seen an upcoming episode of Game of Thronesleak ahead of its scheduled premiere. A HBO Europe spokesperson acknowledged the leak, which was described as “brief.”
“We have learned that the upcoming episode of Game of Thrones was accidentally posted for a brief time on the HBO Nordic and HBO Espana platforms,” the spokesperson said. “The error appears to have originated with a third-party vendor and the episode was removed as soon as it was recognized. This is not connected to the recent cyber incident at HBO in the U.S.”
A Reddit forum dedicated to Game of Thrones, however, was discussing the quality of the episode titled “Death Is the Enemy” that has hit torrent sites (it was described as high quality and only missing the closing credits). The episode appears to have spread quickly on the Internet early Wednesday.
On Aug. 3, the fourth episode of Game of Thrones‘ Season 7 leaked online and made its way onto torrent sites nearly three days ahead of its scheduled bow. That breach was attributed to theft at Star India, which distributes the series in that country. Four arrests have been made in that case, which police say was carried out by current and former employees of Prime Focus Technologies, the company contracted by Star India to manage the data.
The two cases come at a time when HBO has been dealing with anonymous hackers who claim to have taken 1.5 terabytes of data and plan to release it slowly if their ransom demands are not met. So far, the hackers have released a mix of video content, including episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm‘s highly anticipated upcoming season, as well as Game of Thrones script summaries and one executive’s emails that spanned a 30-day period.
The Aug. 3 leak as well as the hacker disruptions have had no effect on Game of Thrones ratings. The Aug. 6 episode, titled “Spoils of War,” posted record-breaking numbers for HBO’s crown jewel series. Those numbers were topped by the Aug. 13 episode Eastwatch.
Someone who obviously doesn’t have the jedi force in ‘em broke into the Starz mainframe last week and leaked the remaining episodes of Power Season Four. Said person then posted the poor quality episodes to their Facebook page ruining it for everyone.
Starz announced they’re prepared to take legal action against the evil dooer, but let Power executive producer 50 Cent tell it, execs think the job was done from someone in house.
“Starz thinks I leaked my own show,” Fif captioned on his Instagram page. “Anyway, if you have On Demand catch Power tonight 12:00AM. If not, Sunday 9:00PM it is LOL”
The network which is home to the Courtney A. Kemp scripted drama has not publicly addressed Fif’s comments, and for all we know Mr. Jackson could very well be trying to turn a horrible public blunder into a possible win by drumming up more excitement for the remainder of the season.
According to Fif, the reason for the accusations are allegedly because the network thinks he’s trying to follow suit with another show who experienced the same bad luck.
“They know I know when Game of Thrones leaked they had a spike in ratings, so they looking at me side eyed. LOL,” 50 Cent wrote to a fan.
Mr. Jackson wants to win, this we know, but to do so at the expense of his own show? We can’t call it, but what do you think? Sound off in the comments.
An unaired episode of Game of Thrones has appeared on the internet this morning. Episode six, due to be aired on Sunday, appeared first on file sharing sites and a Reddit post. Some Reddit users claim the episode was accidentally aired by HBO Nordic in Spain for an hour before it was removed. The episode six appearance follows a similar leak of episode four around two weeks ago.
The previous leak was related to a distribution partner in India, and it’s likely this is a similar scenario if the Reddit claims are accurate. HBO was subject to a security breach earlier this week, allowing hackers to reportedly obtain 1.5 terabytes of stolen data from the company’s US servers. This latest leak doesn’t appear to be related to the security issues. Hackers have so far only published published script outlines on the web, rather than full episodes.
HBO has struggled multiple times with Game of Thrones leaks in the past. The first four episodes of season 5 leaked online, thanks to advance screeners that are sent out to members of the press. A HBO subsidiary also released a season 6 episode a day early. HBO decided to scrap screeners for season 7, but that hasn’t prevented two major leaks this season.
The Verge has reached out to HBO for comment, and we’ll update you accordingly.
Castrated “root and stem” as a young boy by a heartless magician and left on the streets to die, he clung on to his life by begging, stealing and selling “what parts of my body still remained”, before transforming himself into one of the most influential figures in the Seven Kingdoms. Varys, the so-called Spider and Master of Whisperers to multiple monarchs, is one of Game of Thrones’s most compelling creations, and one of few truly low-born characters to establish himself as a main player in the HBO series.
In earlier seasons, it was often difficult to tell what the endgame of the bald eunuch, played to slippery perfection by the Northern Irish actor Conleth Hill, would turn out to be. Like Aidan Gillen’s Littlefinger, who boasts a similarly sharp set of scheming skills, he clearly had a Long Term Agenda. Unlike Littlefinger, however, who craves power for himself, Varys has repeatedly claimed that he is working only for the good of the realm, and for the ordinary, innocent people who live in it. He will lie, and betray his “betters” – but it’s all to make sure that the right person sits on the Iron Throne. Littlefinger might crave chaos (he thinks it’s just like a ladder, did you know?) but Varys, ultimately, wants stability.
It just needs to be the right kind of Varys-approved stability.
Challenged by Daenerys (Emilia Clarke), who questioned his flickering allegiances earlier this season, the eunuch launched a passionate defence of himself.
“When I was a child I lived in alleys, gutters, abandoned houses. You wish to know where my loyalties lie? Not with any King or Queen, but with the people,” he told her. “The people who suffer under despots and prosper under just rule. The people whose hearts you aim to win! If you demand blind allegiance, I respect your wishes. Grey Worm can behead me, or your dragons can devour me.”
In this respect, Varys is one of the most forward-thinking characters in the Game of Thrones world. Yes, others have challenged the show’s rulers in the past (Robert’s Rebellion, which took place long before the events of the series, was prompted by the actions of a tyrant) but only Varys is enlightened enough to regard unquestioning loyalty as a flaw in itself, rather than something to be overcome in extreme situations.
Of late, he certainly seems to be wavering in his feelings towards Daenerys, understandably perturbed by her penchant for Drogon-assisted punishment (aka burning people alive). Because of this, many have speculated that he could abandon her after all, possibly even aligning himself with the annoyingly noble Jon Snow, whose claim to the throne, it was subtly revealed in Eastwatch, could well be the strongest of all.
Of course, Daenerys’s decision to support Jon in the battle against the army of the dead, coupled with the fact that the two leaders appear to be growing closer (some are convinced they’ll be hooking up by the end of the season), could mean that Varys won’t have to choose between them after all.
The Twilight series ended in 2012 but Robert Pattinson recently hinted that fans may not have seen the last of Edward Cullen and Bella Swan yet. With the demands of a Twilight reboot growing by the minute, FKA Twigs’ fiance’ and Kristen Stewart’s reunion in the big screen might not be far from happening.
According to Lionsgate, the studio that distributed the romantic fantasy film, there are still “a lot more stories to be told” in Twilight, which is why adding a new installment will make a lot of sense. After learning that people are still interested in another addition of the mega-successful novel-turned-movie, Robert Pattinson (Edward Cullen) hinted that he’s not against playing the famous vampire again.
As if that’s not enough good news for the Twilight fans, Kristen Stewart (Bella Swan) did not totally shoot down the idea when asked about a possible reboot.
Although a new Twilight installment seems promising, author Stephenie Meyer has to be down to revive the saga as well to finally make it official.
While Kristen Stewart revealed that she is definitely okay for another team-up with her former co-star and ex-boyfriend, Robert Pattinson, she revealed that she wants to do other films as well. The 27-year-old actress and model shared that it’s definitely hard to be a part of a successful project as people tend to be so aggressive about it that they forget that the actors in the film have personal lives too.
Meanwhile, Kristen Stewart shocked the world when she started to date women after her very public split from Robert Pattinson. The duo ended their whirlwind romance after the Twilight actress was caught romancing her Snow White and the Huntsman director, Rupert Sanders.
Although the Personal Shopper star has never officially declared her sexuality, her recent relationships confirmed that the star may finally be done dating men. Many believed that her blossoming relationship with model and Miley Cyrus’ ex, Stella Maxwell, led Kristen Stewart to try to save it by keeping their romance as private as possible.
Rumor has it that the pair are so in love that they are ready to finally take things to the next level. However, just like the rest of the whispers about Kristen Stewart and Stella Maxwell’s relationship, the wedding rumors remain to be a speculation for now as well.
The Walking Dead TV series has done little to tell the story of how its villainousNegan arrived in his powerful position but that may soon change.
The popular AMC series has plans to tell the villains backstory which was recently told in its entirety on the comic book pages of Here’s Negan, a 16-partbackstory special from writer/creator Robert Kirkman and artist Charlie Adlardpublished in the Image+ preview magazine. When asked by YahooTV if Negan’sstory would be adapted to the TV series, showrunner Scott Gimple says there is a “loose plan” for it already.
“I do believe yes, it’s in the future,” Gimple said. “You know, I’m always careful about this, [because] things can absolutely change. There’s a loose plan in place I have.”
More specifically, Gimple promises Negan’s backstory will stay true to the comic book source material, at least in part. “I take that Here’s Negan story as thebackstory,” Gimple said. “There’s some aspects of it that will probably be cool [on the show]. It’s some fairly far-flung stuff… in the future, you will see some stuff from that.”
Gimple’s comments came during the show’s seventh season, just before the midseason finale aired. The remainder of the seventh season steered clear of the villain’s backstory, meaning audiences have only gotten closer to the story being told.
Negan’s backstory caught most reader’s by surprise, as some aspects of it actually earned the villain a touch of sympathy from readers…
Spoilers for Negan’s backstory as told in the Here’s Negan comics follow.
The common word of Negan being a car salesman prior to the apocalypse is incorrect — having spawned in an years old Letter Hacks section where Kirkman teased the possibility.
Prior to the zombie virus taking over, however, Negan was a high school gym teacher and a ping pong coach. He wasn’t just any gym teacher, though. Negan wanted to be the cool teacher. He cursed at his students and gave them a hard time when they would fail, which he saw as a method of pushing them — even when they would feel bullied and start to cry.
Before everyone around him started to die, Negan had a wife. During his marriage, however, Negan began having an affair. His wife had full knowledge of the affair and allowed it to happen as she saw that Negan was happy with it, despite how it hurt her.
When Negan’s wife became diagnosed with terminal cancer, he immediately cut off his relationship with the other woman and tried to spend as much time with his wife as possible. The villain finally realized that he loved her, but she was furious that it took her cancer to make him cut off the affair. Still, he pushed her around in her wheelchair in the park and stayed by her side in the hospital until the end.
Negan’s wife’s name was Lucille.
When Would It Air?
If The Walking Dead TV series wants to tell Negan’s story at the same time the comics did, the character’s rise into villainy, an episode – or series of episodes – would likely be featured around Season 10 or Season 11. By the time Negan’s story is told in the Here’s Negan book, the main Walking Dead comic series had already concluded the All Out War story and launched its Whisperer War story a couple of years later.
Luckily for fans hoping to see more of the villain, Negan actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan tells ComicBook.com he is with the series for “the long haul.” No one should expect the villain to go anywhere any time soon.
Of course, certain aspects of The Walking Dead‘s comic book story have been altered to accommodate the TV series’ needs. The Oceanside community, for example, was introduced well ahead of its debut in the comics. The Walking Dead reserves the right to tell Negan’s story as early as Season 8 while the character is the hottest topic of the series.